EMQ’s With Akkadian
Hi everyone! Welcome to another EMQs interview, this time with UK Progressive/ Groove Metal, Akkadian. Huge thanks to Vocalist, Danny Thurston, for taking part.
What is your name, what do you play and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?
I am Danny Thurston and I’m the vocalist for Akkadian. Akkadian fully formed in Cambridge in the later months of 2018. We all live and for the most part met in Cambridge too. However, our origins do actually go back many years. Harry (Guitar) and I (Danny, Vocals) have been writing music together since we were around 15 years old and have known each other since Nursery (aged 3).
Finding the right people to complete the band took a lot of time. The first person we got on board was Chris, our Bassist. We put an ad on JoinMyBand.com to which he replied, sent us a video of him playing some Lamb of God tracks and the rest is history. Together, we then tried out multiple guitarists and drummers for months and months in a band practice setting, but it never felt right, nothing clicked. However, eventually we managed to find our Drumming Prodigy, Aaron. And boy are we grateful! Max joined us in late 2022 after our previous guitarist left. Fortunately, he was already a close friend and fan of the band, so he fit in perfectly.
How did you come up with your band name?
Have you ever seen the Scorpion King with The Rock?!… Just kidding. The word “Akkadian” is actually the name of the first Ancient Mesopotamian Empire that existed between 2334 – 2154 B.C. Years ago I was just reading up on a bunch of ancient civilisation and events, when I stumbled across the name “Akkadian” and thought – “That would be a kick arse name for a Metal band”. We did have a bunch of names to choose from, but we liked the fact that it was a one word name and that is started with an “A”. Meaning it would appear at the top of the “Artist List” in people’s music libraries. To us it represents not only a piece of ancient history, but a motive of taking over, conquering and leaving your mark.
What Country / Region are you from and what is the Metal / Rock scene like there?
We all live and for the most part met in Cambridge, UK. It’s a really beautiful city with so much history. Many successful people, particularly in science, such as Stephen Hawking, Isaac Newton, J. Robert Oppenheimer, Alan Turing, Rosalind Franklin and David Attenborough – to name a few, have studied and lived in Cambridge. Pink Floyd and the famous photographer Mick Rock also have their roots in Cambridge too. So, the bar around us is set very high! The metal scene in Cambridge is much alive and kicking, with special thanks to The Six Six Bar! That place is relentless at putting on live shows and have Metal DJ nights! It’s truly been a revival for the metal community here. So, if you’re ever in town, be sure to head over to The Six Six on East Road to check it out!
What is your latest release?
Our latest release is our title track single and EP “The Devil Has Evolved”. The single will be available 20th October and then the EP one week later on the 27th October.
Who have been your greatest influences?
For me it’s been bands like Avenged Sevenfold, Deftones, Gojira, Bring Me The Horizon, Lamb of God, The Black Angels and Tool. But saying that, I take a lot of influence from late 60’s / 70’s music. Such as The Doors, Pink Floyd, The Rolling Stones, David Bowie, The Velvet Underground and Free too. You’ve gotta take a little of everything you love and sprinkle it over your own work when it’s needed.
What first got you into music?
My older sister used to have these Mix CD’s in the car full of bands like Bullet For My Valentine, System of a Down, Avenged Sevenfold and My Chemical Romance etc. So that’s what first got me into “heavier” music. I was always listening to other things, but that’s what caused the transition to heavier rock and metal. But to be honest, the biggest boot into music was because of Gene Simmons of Kiss. Gene visited my small, dead end, seaside town’s local high school when I was around 13 years old, along with Tony Iommi of Black Sabbath and Suzi Quatro (both temporarily), to make a Reality TV show called “Rock School”. In the show, he created a rock band out of the high school students and took them to Los Angeles to perform live in front of thousands of people. I was already into rock music by that age, but watching the show sparked something in me and I’ve never been the same since.
If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?
It would be a dream to collaborate with Avenged Sevenfold or M.Shadows one day. I think we could create a wild, experimental track together. But in terms of the scene, I think Loathe would be a cool collaboration. I’ve grown to be a big fan of their sound and aesthetic. I believe we’d blend well.
If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?
Burning Man would be pretty wild. Just out in the desert, psychedelic vibes, with your music echoing out, vibrating through people. Crazy fire and lights everywhere. Yeah, I think that would be cool.
If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?
Thank you so much for your continuous support at our live shows. It really means the world! With your help, we can continue to grow and do bigger and better things. Your enthusiasm and support makes this possible! Keep spreading the word!
If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?
David Bowie. We need his wisdom and guidance! Even if it’s just a Force Ghost from time to time.
What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?
I enjoy writing and recording new songs, figuring it out like a puzzle, but the puzzle is based purely on groove. There’s no better feeling than to get parts to fit and flow just right together. I also love playing live shows on a large enough stage for me to move around on, with awesome lights and sound to go with it.
If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?
That there were more people out there in higher positions willing to take chances and be daring. Instead of playing it safe with what’s trendy or got the most streams. Let’s get back to being a little more experimental with what people “could” like and not what they are currently liking.
Name one of your all-time favourite albums?
It’s a tough one. Today I’ll go with “Strange Days” by The Doors.
What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?
I love owning vinyl. But it tends to be of old records from the 60’s-80’s. I’m personally happy with downloads / streams. I think if the production is high, the quality is there. Especially with a good set of headphones or speakers. Not to mention the convenience of just having it everywhere you go, being able to make your own playlists within seconds etc. Big fan!
What’s the best gig that you have played to date?
In the summer, we played at Tech Fest. That was a big achievement for us! We got to play the same weekend as Loathe, Born of Osiris, Chelsea Grin, Aborted, Conjurer and Kublai Khan etc. Although I was unwell for the show / performance itself, I’d definitely say that as a whole, it was the biggest highlight of our journey so far! To this day we are still extremely grateful for getting that opportunity.
If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?
I’d probably get into film in some aspect. Whether it be videography / cinematography, writing or directing etc. I’ve got a real love and passion for it. So I think I would have definitely or could even eventually further down the line, get into that kind of work. Even if it’s small, low budget, self funded projects.
Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?
Alive and asking me today – Matthew McConaughey, Brad Pitt, Miley Cyrus, Kristen Stewart and Brian Cranston. Then Will Ferrell shows up with more wine and cheese.
What’s next for the band?
More gigs around England, promoting the new EP, plus we’re currently writing and recording demos for a debut album. We will be playing the Cambridge Junction on Friday 24th November. It would be awesome to see new faces there! Use discount code “Akkadian” for a £5 ticket!
What Social Media / Website links do you use to get your music out to people?
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/akkadianband/
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/akkadianband/
Twitter / X – https://www.twitter.com/akkadianband/
YouTube – https://youtu.be/fqytOomc1EQ
Website – https://www.akkadian.co.uk
Time for a very British question now. As an alternative to the humble sandwich, is the correct name for a round piece of bread common in the UK either a Bap, a Barm (or Barm Cake), a Batch, a Bun a Cob, a Muffin, a Roll or a Tea Cake?
Baps for Breakfast, Rolls for Lunch and Buns for Burgers.
Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?
If you get a moment to check us out we’d really appreciate it! Small actions like following us on social media, liking / interacting with our posts, streaming our songs from start to finish – it all makes a huge difference in this day and age! If we play in a town near you, come on down! We’d love to meet you!
Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.